baked goods such as doughnuts, pastries, pizza dough,
cakes, pie crust, cookies, crackers, as well as stick
margarines and other spreads.
For many years, trans fat was a boon for food
manufacturers because it is easy to use, inexpensive to
produce, and lasts a long time, which increases the shelf
life of products. It also can alter a food’s taste and texture.
Many restaurants and fast-food outlets have used oils
with trans fat to deep-fry foods because it can be used over
and over in commercial fryers.
Trans fat became controversial in the 1990s when
researchers found evidence that it had adverse health effects.
Trans fat raises bad (LDL) cholesterol levels, increasing
the risk of heart disease. Trans fat is also associated with a
higher risk of developing Type 2 diabetes.
In June 2015, the FDA announced their determination that
partially hydrogenated oils (PHOs) are no longer “generally
recognized as safe” in human food. This means there is no
safe level that can be consumed. Food manufacturers were
given three years to remove PHOs from products. Many
companies have been working to remove them more quickly.
The American Heart Association recommends avoiding
artificial trans fat and PHOs in your diet.
You can check the amount of trans fat in packaged foods
by reading the Nutrition Facts information and ingredients.
If the amount of trans fat per serving is less than 0.5 grams,
the label may state 0 g, so be sure to check the ingredients
Putting it all TOGETHER
• Replace saturated and trans fats with unsaturated fats
as part of a healthy eating pattern.
• When eating out, ask what kind of fat or oil foods are
cooked in. Request unsaturated fats when possible.
• Choose healthier, mostly unsaturated vegetable oils for
cooking and preparing foods at home.
• If you eat meat, choose lean and extra-lean cuts and
remove visible fat and poultry skin.
• Use healthier cooking methods that don’t add saturated
fat, like roasting, grilling, steaming or baking.
• Choose fat-free (skim) or low-fat (1%) milk, yogurt
and dairy products.
Trans fat became controversial in the
1990s when researchers found evidence
that it had adverse health effects.
he AHA’s healthy eating
eating more servings of fruit
and veggies. An easy way to do that
is to add color to your plate.
Look at your meal. If it looks a bit
too beige, you may be eating foods
with a lot of saturated fat. You can
improve it by adding some colorful
fruit and veggies.
Jazz up rice and pasta with
some frozen veggies. Add plenty
of vegetables to soups. Add color
to casseroles by sneaking some
shredded fruit or vegetables into the
recipe. Omit the meat and double
the veg for a meatless stir-fry.
Stack sandwiches and burgers with
avocado, tomato and other sliced
fruits and veggies.
And it’s good for your budget:
many fruits and vegetables are
less than $1 a serving, and you
can often buy in bulk in season
and freeze for later use. A piece of
fruit is a healthy snack and almost
always cheaper than anything from
a vending machine.
Visit AHA’s recipe hub for delicious,
affordable recipe ideas full of color!
ADD COLOR TO YOUR PLATE